What’s the Best Time of Day to Do Yoga? See the Pros and Cons of Different Practice Times

Leah Sugerman
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As a yoga teacher, I’m commonly asked when is the best time to do yoga. While it might seem like this question should have a straightforward response, it’s actually not so easy to answer.

This is because the time of day that you practice yoga depends on many different factors like, of course, when you actually have the time to dedicate to your practice and when you prefer to get on your mat.

Yoga really is such a personal practice in every regard so there is no blanket answer that can be provided as to which time of day is best to practice.

However, there are certain benefits that different times of day offer to your yoga practice that you may wish to contemplate when you think about the best time of day for you to hop on your mat.
 
 

When Is the Best Time to Do Yoga? Here Are the Pros and Cons for Each Time of the Day:

While there is no one specific time of day that we could say is the absolute best time to do yoga, you can certainly consider the pros and cons of different times to practice.
 

 
 

1. Morning

Morning is traditionally considered the best time to do yoga. But that doesn’t mean it is necessarily the best time for you personally.

Pros:

  • It’s the first part of your day so your practice won’t be missed
  • Your mind is fresh and clear
  • Your body is (hopefully!) well rested
  • Sets the tone for the rest of your day
  • Some traditions (like Kundalini Yoga) consider the morning “ambrosial hours” to be sacred

 

Cons:

  • If you’re not a morning person, you may be too groggy (though yoga can boost your energy levels so this could be a pro for those looking to wake up earlier)
  • Your spinal discs have been compressed all night and may not appreciate further compression from your practice
  • You may be tempted to hit snooze rather than hop on your mat
  • Your body isn’t warmed up after lying in bed for eight or more hours so there is potentially a heightened risk of injury

 

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2. Afternoon

Although not traditionally considered to be the best time to practice yoga, afternoon yoga may actually prove to be your favorite time to practice.

Pros:

  • Provides a mid-day break and reset
  • Offers you something to look forward to throughout your day
  • Releases endorphins to get your through your mid-day slump
  • Helps to clear your mind to take on the rest of your day with clarity

 
 

 
 
Cons:

  • Might be tempting to skip for a lunch break instead
  • May tire you out and drain your energy for the rest of the day
  • May be uncomfortable, inconvenient, or inaccessible to shower midday after a sweaty practice

 
Not sure Which Yoga Style Best Fits Your Needs? Learn About 3 Types of Yoga + Their Benefits
 

3. Evening

Often considered another sacred time of day, many yogis think that the evening is the best time to do yoga practices like Yin, Restorative, or Yoga Nidra as you unwind your day and prepare for bed.

This Is Why You Need to Have a Restorative Yoga Practice (According to an ER Doctor)

Pros:

  • Sets the mood for sleep
  • Helps you to “unpack” your day and clear your mind
  • Helps to relieve any stress or anxiety that your day may have created
  • Allows you to tap into the calming, quiet benefits of evening energy

 

Cons:

  • You may be too tired to practice more vigorous styles of yoga
  • You may be tempted to skip your practice because you had a hard day or you’d prefer to unwind on the couch with Netflix
  • If you practice a more soothing and relaxing style of yoga, you may fall asleep

 

Create a solid evening yoga routine with Evening Flows!

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The Best Time to Do Yoga Is When It Best Serves You

The bottom line is there really is no perfect answer to the question, “When is the best time to do yoga?” Ultimately, the best time to do yoga is the time of day when yoga serves you best – and that may change from day to day or year to year.

Just like everything else in your yoga practice, when you choose to practice is a deeply personal and unique decision. There is no uniform best time to do yoga because the best time to practice is the best time for you personally.

Some days you may love your 6am flows and other days, you may roll out your mat at 11pm. Both are equally valid and both are equally beneficial.

So whether you’re an early bird or a night owl, whatever time of day you choose to practice yoga is the perfect and absolute best time for you in that moment.

Whenever your practice calls you, unroll your mat and tune in with your body and breath. Whether it’s the early morning, middle of the day, or late at night, your practice will still serve you well.

Should You Do Yoga at Home Or In a Yoga Studio? Read the Pros of Each to Decide for Yourself

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Leah Sugerman

Leah Sugerman is a yoga teacher, writer, and passionate world traveler. An eternally grateful student, she has trained in countless traditions of the practice and teaches a fusion of the styles she has studied with a strong emphasis on breath, alignment, and anatomical integrity. Leah teaches workshops, retreats, and trainings both internationally and online.

leahsugerman.com

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